African Design Magazine July 2016 - Page 32

2 What was the brief? Our brief was to design a contemporary family home that was both practical yet architecturally stunning – the house had to have a good balance between garden and built structure, and the garden had to be visible at all times when in the house. It was formerly a residential site with an old structure on it and the size of the property is 2 500m². Were there any issues on site? The biggest issue with the site was the underground rock that had to be blasted, this process delayed the project by two and a half months. How would you describe the concept of the project? We looked at designing a structure that hugged the back boundaries and focused the house on the inner garden space, this allowed us to create a very private structure from the neighbours and yet a completely transparent aspect to the garden. The house was designed with major family entertainment in mind, as the family is quite large. All bedrooms are upstairs, being the main private areas, and the ground floor is mostly for entertainment. Due to the fact that the property is in a pan handle, and the entrance of the property is facing north, the structure was planned to open up to the entrance, and create privacy to the neighbours. What was the inspiration behind the concept? Raw materials and high volumes, to create a rustic and sculptural aesthetic. What sustainable initiatives were implemented in the design? We used solar energy to power the house which is stored in batteries, and all the glass façades are double glazed to control energy heat loss and heat gain depending on the season. Internal heating is achieved via a closed water system which runs in the floor, which is heated via solar energy.